Monday, May 26, 2008

What do you think about Florida?

I'm not all that interested in the 'Florida Revival' and I've not looked into the specifics of it all, except for some glances at Todd Bentley's website a couple of years ago and it's increasing appearances on blogs - which I'm now adding too...

But, a few people have asked for my opinion on it recently, to which I've happily confessed my ignorance about it, and my general lack of opinion. What it does provide is a helpful opportunity to think about what genuine works of God look like.

And that being the case here are two helpful things to look at, both written by charismatics
The latter is particularly interesting as it's Storms' interpretation of Jonathan Edwards reflections on the basis of the American revivals of his time, and Edwards doesn't write as a charismatic. Storms helps unpack the somewhat unwieldy Edwards to show us twelve signs that prove nothing, and twelve things that mark a genuine work of God - accompanied by Edwards 'personal narrative' of his experience of God.

I'm all for charismaticism with a Biblical seatbelt. To test and weigh something is an act of faith, that drives us to God's word so we can reject what isn't real and so we can believe what is real.


  1. Ah was it my enthusiasm for the Florida Outpouring that necessitated my removal from your blogroll?! Alas. ;)

    I'm interested in the Mark Driscoll-ian "seatbelt" analogy as I think he describes himself as a charismatic wearing one. Thing is - it tends to give one a picture of put-putting along the M25 in rush hour in a Fiat Punto "safe" because the seat belt is on.

    Whereas the Biblical seatbelt is vital for our safety because the charismatic power of God that is demonstrating itself in signs, wonders and miracles and IS raising the dead is more helpfully portrayed by something like a fighter jet breaking the speed of sound! THAT'S why we need seat-belts surely!

    Because Acts/charismatic/New Testament church life is of such power and vital encounter with the manifest Presence of God that it will indeed cause our minds to struggle to grasp the concept that the power of God is breaking "natural laws" and heaven is breaking in!

    If that's the case of what you and Driscoll mean by "seat-belts" then I am all for it. If the picture is more of that friendly old Fiat, then I am not sure whether seat-belts are even necessary because are we even travelling fast enough?

    Blessings! PS: And I am sorry if I did something or wrote something that annoyed you.

  2. No, no offence or anything was caused. I recently deleted half the blogroll and replenished them with different ones, and was a little click-happy in the deletation process and not paying too much attention to which ones I kept or removed!!

    The Jet vs. M25-Punto is a helpful analogy. It's a Biblical seatbelt that stops Simon buying apostolic power, that confirms Paul should go to Macedonia, that means the Corinthians will be able to embrace real prophecy etc.

  3. Haha, was your deletion process completely random? JB hasn't updated his blog in over a year...

    Maybe we're fiat puntos with fighter jet power and we need more than a seatbelt for the car so we don't fall apart completely ;) Ah there's nothing like stretching an analogy to, um, make it snap.

  4. Fairly random yes. I may well have to delete JB and reinstant Dan... when I get round to it.

    Always fun to see how far an analogy will stretch!

  5. Dave,

    Thanks for the link to my post at Cerulean Sanctum on the happenings in Florida.

    May you and your readers be blessed.

  6. I have watched some of the events from florida on TV.
    If people are being healed and it is a genuine move of God that is great. I have noticed on certain evenings there is a call to repentance, I am not sure it is the best gospel I have heard - there is hardly any use of the bible.
    I guess some questions arise in my mind.
    How do we verify revival?
    Should there be a list on their website with doctor reports etc?
    Why is there a need for people to go to Florida to bring the revival home?

  7. Should there be a list on their website with doctor reports etc?
    I'm inclined to think not, unless they're being used to prove the reality of a 'revival' - which would seem to be the case here.

    Why is there a need for people to go to Florida to bring the revival home?
    Good question. I've been thinking about the whole 'catching' thing recently. I came back from the Sovereign Grace Ministries meetings and T4G conference having 'caught' something, largely from the atmosphere, attitudes and teaching of the meetings I was in and the people I met. That thing I caught was a relentlessly gospel-centredness which is also (in my mind) a work of God... so perhaps this 'annointing' is also catchable... still leaves the question of whether it's one you'd want to catch...

    I suppose my theology of change is so wedded to Scripture, Seeing Jesus there and the transformation done by the Holy Spirit by that... Yet don't I also think change comes through prayer?

    I'm thinking out loud...